Cultivar of a squash plant.Pumpkins.A pumpkin is a cultivar of winter squash that is round with smooth, slightly ribbed skin, and is most often deep yellow to orange in coloration.Native to North America (northeastern Mexico and the southern United States),[1] pumpkins are one of the oldest domesticated plants, having been used as early as 7,000 to 5,500 BC.Pumpkin pie, for instance, is a traditional part of Thanksgiving meals in Canada and the United States, and pumpkins are frequently carved as jack-o'-lanterns for decoration around Halloween, although commercially canned pumpkin purée and pumpkin pie fillings are usually made from varieties of winter squash different from the ones used for jack-o'-lanterns.[1] In 2019, China accounted for 37% of the world's production of pumpkins.[1] In North America and the United Kingdom, pumpkin traditionally refers to only certain round orange varieties of winter squash, predominantly derived from Cucurbita pepo, while in New Zealand and Australian English, the term pumpkin generally refers to all winter squash.Pumpkins, like other squash, originated in northeastern Mexico and southern United States.Giant pumpkins are large squash with a pumpkin-like appearance that grow to exceptional size, with the largest exceeding a tonne in weight.Production [ edit ].In the United States [ edit ].As one of the most popular crops in the United States, in 2017 over 680 million kilograms (1.5 billion pounds) of pumpkins were produced.According to the Illinois Department of Agriculture, 95% of the U.S. crop intended for processing is grown in Illinois.[23] The United States Department of Agriculture quotes a much more modest share: 41% of the overall pumpkin crop originates in the state, still more than five times the nearest competitor (California, whose pumpkin industry is centered in the San Joaquin Valley), and the majority of that comes from five counties in the central part of the state.The specific conditions necessary for growing pumpkins require that soil temperatures 8 centimetres (3 in) deep are at least 15.5 °C (60 °F) and that the soil holds water well.Pumpkin crops may suffer if there is a lack of water or because of cold temperatures (in this case, below 18 °C or 65 °F).Pumpkins produce both a male and female flower, with fertilization usually effected by bees.Cooking [ edit ].In the United States and Canada, pumpkin is a popular Halloween and Thanksgiving staple.In its native North America, pumpkins are a very important, traditional part of the autumn harvest, eaten mashed[34] and making its way into soups and purées.In Canada, Mexico, the United States, Europe and China, the seeds are often roasted and eaten as a snack.In Guangxi province, China, the leaves of the pumpkin plant are consumed as a cooked vegetable or in soups.The seeds are a popular sunflower seed substitute.In the southwestern United States and Mexico, pumpkin and squash flowers are a popular and widely available food item.Pumpkin leaves are also eaten in Zambia, where they are called chibwabwa and are boiled and cooked with groundnut paste as a side dish.Leaves [ edit ].Seeds [ edit ].Pumpkin seed oil [ edit ].Pumpkin seed oil, a thick oil pressed from roasted pumpkin seeds, appears red or green in color depending on the oil layer thickness, container properties and hue shift of the observer's vision.Halloween [ edit ].A pumpkin carved into a jack-o'-lantern for Halloween.Pumpkins are commonly carved into decorative lanterns called jack-o'-lanterns for the Halloween season.[55] Not until 1837 does jack-o'-lantern appear as a term for a carved vegetable lantern,[56] and the carved pumpkin lantern association with Halloween is recorded in 1866.In the United States, the carved pumpkin was first associated with the harvest season in general, long before it became an emblem of Halloween.Pumpkin festivals and competitions [ edit ]. .

Full Moon 2021 calendar: Dates, times, nicknames for the brightest

Streaming platforms will bring us new content in 2021: a Dexter revival on Showtime and a new season of The Handmaid’s Tale on Hulu.It’s a great social distancing activity to enjoy in an open field in the country, or on the roof of your apartment building.Try binoculars or a telescope for more resolution and the opportunity to make out craters and mountain ranges.During the Moon’s crescent phases, pay special attention to the liminal space between dark and light, where the lunar topography may cast long shadows and make features easier to pick out.Regardless of their origin, lunar lingo seems united by the themes of cultural timekeeping, celebration, changing seasons, and observations of the natural world.Maybe go for a night run or howl in the New Year with the Wolf Moon, which will shine in the sky on January 28 at 2:16 p.m. Eastern.Time to strap on snowshoes in the backcountry, the Snow Moon rises on February 27 at 3:17 a.m. Eastern.This year’s Flower Moon will also feature a Total Lunar eclipse at 7:19 a.m. Eastern.“A total lunar eclipse occurs when the Moon and Sun are on opposite sides of Earth.”.Grab some from your garden or store as the Strawberry Moon rises on June 24 at 2:40 p.m.

Eastern.Ungulate antlers shed in the winter are growing back fast when the Buck Moon rises on July 23 at 10:37 p.m. Eastern.Look for the deer and elk roaming the forest or plains near you (or eating all of your berry plants if you have a garden).It can also refer to the emergence of four, instead of three Full Moons in a “season,” defined as the period between a Solstice and an Equinox.Whichever month’s Full Moon is closest to the Equinox wins the title.Consider getting dressed up early this year to celebrate the Blood Moon on October 20 at 10:57 a.m.

Eastern.Also this month, NASA is hosting International Observe the Moon Night on October 16.This year, the Frost Moon features a partial Lunar Eclipse peaking at 4:04 a.m. Eastern.It will be visible from the Americas, northern Europe, east Asia, Australia, and the Pacific. .

It's Time for Last-Minute Planting Before Summer

Though it is quite possible to plant almost anything at any time in Southern California, there are seasons better suited to planting, and we are fast coming to the end of one--spring.The same weather that usually makes Memorial Day weekend a little chilly at the beach lets gardeners get in a little last-minute planting before summer begins.May and most of June are traditionally foggy in the mornings and afternoons near the beach, and the effect is felt fairly far inland, tempering what would otherwise be hot weather.It’s a good time to be able to plant because by now, spring has peaked and some flowers and vegetables are beginning to fold their tents for summer.Advertisement.It is not the ideal time to plant because summer is so close at hand, but if you plant soon and water often at first, perhaps even every day for a few weeks, they will take hold.One way to make sure they get watered is to plant only inside the pattern of a portable sprinkler.This makes it easy to keep new plants watered.In a few weeks you should be able to water once or twice a week at most, because the roots will have grown deep into the soil where they are safe from the hot, drying weather.This is also the favored time to plant citrus and other subtropical fruit trees and subtropical ornamentals, such as bananas, bougainvillea and hibiscus, that need a warm soil before their roots will grow.Recent research also suggests that the roots of most plants--but not the subtropicals or the summer flowering or fruiting annuals just mentioned--grow only in the fall.If you plant now, they might grow more foliage but they will not make roots, and this adds to the burden of watering because you are essentially still growing them in a container since they are not well rooted into the surrounding soil.The research suggests that improving the soil in the planting hole helps the tree or shrub get off to a fast start, but within a few years the plant dramatically slows and loses strength compared to plants put in a hole with only the natural soil for backfill.The plants will get off to a slower start but it will be surer, and within a few years they’ll be growing faster and be much stronger than those in improved soil.THIS WEEKEND YOU CAN PLANT: Annual flowers to plant now, from seed or small plants, for color that will last all summer:.Ageratum.Amaranthus.Balsam.Most perennials can still be planted if you are quick about it, but these are most likely to flower through summer, or in early fall:. .

Roasted Butternut Squash Soup

This traditional butternut squash soup will round out your fall and winter meals.I designed this soup to complement typical Thanksgiving fare, like green beans and mashed potatoes.You’ll only need eight basic ingredients to make this luscious soup: butternut squash, olive oil, butter, shallot, garlic, vegetable broth, maple syrup and nutmeg.A little bit of butter rounds out the flavor and makes it truly irresistible, without weighing down the soup like heavy cream tends to do.It’s by far the best butternut squash soup I’ve ever tasted, and infinitely better than any canned or boxed option.Most of this soup’s flavor comes from the cooking method, which starts with roasting the butternut squash to bring out its caramelized best.Thanksgiving table real estate is always limited, so you might want to serve this soup in matching mugs or tea cups to leave room for the salad plates.This soup really doesn’t need a garnish, but feel free to add a sprinkle of freshly ground black pepper or some toasted pepitas (green pumpkin seeds) for extra visual appeal.You can add the remaining ingredients to the pot and then try to blend it with an immersion blender, which inevitably leaves the soup disappointingly gritty.You can very carefully transfer hot soup to a blender in batches, which is always a little harrowing but yields creamier results.Here’s the gist: Instead of warming all of the ingredients in the pot, simply transfer scoops of roasted butternut squash and sautéed shallot and garlic to the blender.The container is 64 ounces, which allowed me to fit all of the ingredients for this soup without surpassing the maximum fill line.Oftentimes, blending your soup for 4 to 6 minutes will heat it up sufficiently to serve directly from the blender. .

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